The Art and Artifice of Passing

deadline for submissions: 
May 15, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
diana shaffer/PAMLA
contact email: 

Inspired by the phenomena of social passing, this roundtable, explores characters—fictional or real—who transform their identities to achieve, freer, more desirable daily lives. I am particularly interested in proposals that engage with the PAMLA 2022 conference theme Geographies of the Fantastic and Quotidian, though all approaches are welcome.

According to commonly accepted usage, the term passing refers to “the ability of a person to be regarded as a member of an identity group or category, often different from their own, which may include racial identity, ethnicity, caste, social class, sexual orientation, gender, religion, age and/or disability status.” In connection to PAMLA’s 2022 conference theme Geographies of the Fantastic and Quotidian “passing may require acceptance into a new community and lead to temporary or permanent leave from another community to which the individual previously belonged.” How do individuals manage to leave a known community to join an imagined one? What are the psychological costs and benefits of their behavior? How do their individual choices effect their progeny and legacy? How does intersectionality complicate passing? Do the art and artifice of passing represent Geographies of the Fantastic and Quotidian in action? Proposals encompassing all periods and genres of passing and intersectionality are welcome. Please contact diana.shaffer@tx.rr.comwith questions or for additional information.

Please submit proposals to: